Logan Ryan was the first player to arrive in the Giants’ postgame interview room on Sunday, still in full uniform.
Why the rush? The veteran defensive back said that as a captain, he felt a responsibility to answer for the defense’s latest flop, this time in the form of a 38-11 loss to the Rams at MetLife Stadium.
"Come out here, own it, speak to you [reporters], explain to you the best [I can] what I thought happened," he said.
Ryan on several occasions described what happened as "unacceptable," the same word coordinator Patrick Graham used on Thursday to describe the defense’s performance in a 44-20 loss to the Cowboys in Week 5.
Asked then whether the Giants could turn it around against the high-powered Rams, Graham said seven times, "We’re gonna find out."
He got his answer on Sunday. Though turnovers by the Giants’ offense set up two short touchdown drives for the Rams, the defense did not do enough, allowing four touchdowns in the second quarter alone. The 28 points were the most the Giants allowed in a quarter in 11 years.
"We just didn’t execute in the red area," Ryan said. "We did not hold them to three [points] enough. We started off pretty well. A couple of short fields [after turnovers], but on defense you have to put out the fire."
Ryan later added, "For my job, it came down to those red-area stops, making the score 18 or 19-3, or 17, instead of 28, 30. You can’t give up sevens and win this game."
There were too many breakdowns to chronicle here, but the Rams’ final score was particularly embarrassing.
Early in the fourth quarter, Los Angeles quarterback Matthew Stafford hit Cooper Kupp for a 13-yard touchdown pass on which the Giants showed minimal interest in making a tackle.
Kupp finished with nine receptions for 130 yards and two TDs. Stafford was 22-for-28 passing for 251 yards, four scores and one interception, for a passer rating of 128.7.
Opposing quarterbacks this season have 14 touchdown passes against the Giants, a completion percentage of 73.9% and a combined 109.4 passer rating.
Xavier McKinney had two interceptions, one off Stafford and one off backup John Wolford, and Leonard Williams had 1½ sacks. But that was about it for highlights.
"We obviously gave up too many points," Williams said. "No matter what the situation was, we allowed them in the end zone too many times. No matter how we started off, we didn’t finish the way we wanted to."
Williams said "everybody has been grinding since camp." Perhaps, but the defense was supposed to be a strength for the Giants, and it has not been.
"I’m extremely disappointed," Ryan said. "It just hasn’t been acceptable, the results. It’s not good. It’s not good for the fans. It’s not good for anybody outside the building. It’s not good inside the building.
"It just hasn’t been acceptable, and I’m going to do everything I can to change that and make that better."